Need advice on new camera choice for a newbie


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Feb 14, 2016
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Hello everyone,

I've been interested in photography since I was a kid but never really got around to making it serious. Always had 35mm SLRs and had alot of fun shooting. A few years ago I bought a top of the line (at the time) point and shoot and really enjoyed the shooting I did with that. I'm now ready to get into photography as a serious hobby and I'm researching all the choices. Of course, I would love to spend 5k on a professional camera but at this point it is completely unnecessary. I've narrowed my choices down to the Canon T6i and the Nikon D7100. My budget is <$1200 and both of these fit. I found good deals on both and I'm about to purchase. I've read many articles on the two and they seem to be pretty close in comparison. However, I am relatively new to the DSLR scene and new to serious photography. I plan on perhaps taking a class to get myself started. I love shooting nature, animals, and the outdoors. I've also considered taking some paid projects only to offset the price of the camera so the camera I choose needs to be conducive to that. I don't mind buying something 'too serious' for what I'm doing right now as this will grow into a more serious hobby for me. I'd like to hear any input you all might have on choosing one of these cameras (and anything else), it is all welcome and appreciated.
I'm a Nikon owner, so I recommend the Nikon D7100 with kit lens. Beware of the "extras" they often include with the kit, as most of the stuff is simply "filler" items that have limited long-term use. Please post links to each deal so we can see what all is included.
I'm a Nikon owner, so I recommend the Nikon D7100 with kit lens. Beware of the "extras" they often include with the kit, as most of the stuff is simply "filler" items that have limited long-term use. Please post links to each deal so we can see what all is included.

Nikon - D7100 DSLR Camera with 18-55mm VR II and 55-300mm VR Lenses - Black

Canon EOS Rebel T6i 24.2MP DSLR Camera with 18-135mm Lens and Extra 55-250mm Lens

I'm not worried about the extra stuff, I'm just after the body and lenses.
I like Best Buy. I bought my D5000 kit from BestBuy online. I think you get more "camera" in the Nikon deal.
I like them too. I constantly comparison shop and they are usually right on the money. I like that Nikon, seems like a better deal.
I really like both cameras, I like Canon T6 more then any other Canon APS-C, the 7DII is better but far more expensive and the 70D has a much older sensor.
Well saying that I would recommend the D7100.
The reasons are............

Better auto focus system 51 vs 19 auto focus points
1/8000 vs `1/4000 max shutter speed
Better dynamic range
Extra control dial
Top screen
Better build body

As I said I really like the T6i and it is a good camera but overall the D7100 is the better camera and it actually is designed to be a competitor of the 70D and stationed above the Rebel line.
I looked around at DxO Mark and also Imaging Resource for some side-by-side comparison. My choice would for most people, be the Nikon D7100.

Nikon D7100 vs Canon T6i Specifications

In the specifications that matter most, the Nikon wins; overall sensor performance score, dynamic range, and color depth, the Nikon wins those easily. The Nikon shoots faster, 5.8 frames per second versus 4.8 frames per second for the T6i. The D7100 has faster flash synch, DUAL memory card slots, a 51-point AF system, choice of 12- or 14-bit RAW capture. The Canon has a 19-point AF system.

Keep in mind the comparisons on the above-linked page are with the D7100 with the 18-105mm lens, the Canon with an 18-55 kit zoom, so some of the focus timings measuring the lens arriving at a focus point, and of course the weights listed ,are not good points for direct comparison!

The shutter lag time in Manual focus is a telling stat: for the Nikon it is 0.055 seconds, for the Canon T6i the shutter is almost twice as slow, at 0.097 seconds. The Nikon betters the Canon in EVERY measure of shutter lag, except in Live View. The Nikon has a faster start-up time of 0.3 seconds, the Canon 0.9 seconds.

The Nikon has a doubly-capable battery with a CIPA Rating of 950 shots, the Canon has a CIPA Rating of 440 shots. THis CIPA test procedure is **strictly** enforced, and uses the flash being fired every-other frame.

Basically, the D7100 was last generation's TOP crop-body camera from Nikon. The Nikon has a much more-capable White Balance system, with 7 fluorescent WB setting options; the Canon lumps ALL fluorescent lights into one, single value. The Nikon offers 3 custom pre-set WB settings. Nikon also offers WB fine-tuning, using the color-wheeel type grid they've been using since the mid-2000's. The Nikon also offers degrees Kelvin WB settings; basically, the Nikon was designed as a serious enthusiast's camera/pro backup camera.

In RAW+JPEG capture mode, BOTH cameras have a weak buffer....5 shots for Nikon, 6 shots for Canon.

The Nikon offers 26 individual scene modes or subject modes. The Canon T6i has 16 scene/subject modes.

Basically, you're comparing Nikon's prior generation TOP APS-C sensor camera announced in early 2013, a $1,299 camera when new, versus a camer annoucned in 2015 and which is $750 now body-only.

The Nikon is a genuine pentaPRISM camera with a 100% viewfinder coverage, the Canon is the cheaper pentaMIRROR type, with a 95% coverage viewfinder. As was stated above, you are getting more "camera" in the Nikon package. I tell people to buy at BestBuy all the time--it's a great store, with great return policies, and LOADS of locations, good hours, good pricing since they have MASSIVE buying power.

Buying the D7100 is the smart-money move: you get the best camera of its generation and type, once it's been superceeded by something that costs almost twice as much, instead of buying a new, economy model.

Here is another page, with head-to-head comparos, with their comments.Nikon D7100 vs Canon T6i Detailed Comparison They note 18 instances where the Nikon has the upper hand, and 7 instances where the Canon has the better specifications.
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I'm not worried about the extra stuff, I'm just after the body and lenses.

the Canon will give you better "IQ" image quality, selection of lens, AF, etc. but look at a 70D or 7D2, etc.
. the pros use Canon
but go to a store and check them out ![/QUOTE]
I upgraded recently to the 7100 and love it. If you're looking for a bargain, I got mine refurbished from Cameta Camera for under $500. I've had great experiences buying refurbished and this was no exception - it had under 100 shutter clicks and came with full 1 yr warranty (Cameta warranty not Nikon). If you're interested in refurbs check out Adorama, Cameta, B&H. You can save a ton buying used/refurb which comes in handy when you start coveting lenses!
Speaking of lenses, there's fundamentally nothing wrong with those two lenses, but since the camera is capable of excellent performance with better lenses, you should start saving up for your next big add-on purchase. This hobby is addictive.
Many, probably most, refurbished d-slr cameras come from returns to big-box retailers. Cameras bought, shot a bit, then returned cannot legally be sold as "NEW"...and the return policies of many stores today create boatloads of cameras that go into the refurbished channel. Some of the larger vendors in the USA, like Adorama, Cameta Camera, and B&H Photo, sell large numbers of these refurbished units, typically at very good prices. Not that long ago, I did see D7100 refurbished units at a bit under five hundred bucks.
Thank you all for your replies - this is a wealth of good information to help with my decision. I'm open to refurbished. Unfortunately it looks like no one has any in stock right now.
This seems like too good a deal at $200 less than everyone else at the moment.

Anyone heard of/done business with this place?

Nikon D7100 DSLR Camera with 18-55mm and 55-300mm Dual Lens Wi-Fi Kit -
That's a new one to me.

This brings up the possibility that the goods may be what is called "gray market", meaning; imported to the U.S. without a U.S. warranty. I would ask more questions if I were you. It's the same stuff, but if you should ever need warranty work done on it, Nikon USA will not touch it. That extra savings (or cost, depending on your point of view) is what pays for the U.S. warranty. I'm not made of money, but to me, having the U.S. warranty is probably worth the additional cost. Ya takes yer chances, and ya makes yer throw.

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